Matthew Oakley – Marketing Artist at Ubisoft Reflections

Matthew Oakley taken from, (Teesside University, 2012)

At the University of Bolton, Matthew Oakley, a marketing artist at Ubisoft Reflections, visited to give us a talk on his career as an artist and the experience he has had doing so. One of the points brought up by Matthew, which grabbed my attention was, ‘signing an NDA’.

An NDA, non-disclosure agreement, is a contract which is used in order to protect private and confidential information. In this case, games. NDAs can and have been broken in the past which leads to companies taking action. From (Lane, 2016) online blog titled ‘A Conspiracy of Silence: How NDAs Are Harming The Games Industry’ it mentions that ‘if they breach an NDA’ they can ‘lose their job and face legal action’ which in theory stops most information being leaked.

NDA taken from, (Carr & Farrell LLP, n/d)

NDAs can be very beneficial to the company as it allows the company to protect their work or intellectual property. From (Dusty, 2013) online blog titled ‘Protecting Your Ideas via Non-Disclosure Agreements’ it mentions that ‘NDAs are not perfect, but they are useful in warning other parties that the information you are sharing is completely confidential’ which tells us that NDAs are not a joking matter and these companies take them very seriously.

NDAs can last a very long time depending on what information is released. Let’s say a game was released but not every feature planned has been released with it, then most likely, you will not be able to talk publicly about those features in case they spring up in future. From (Bushby, 2015) online blog titled ‘10 Things You Didn’t Know About Non-Disclosure Agreements’ it says that ‘you’ll often see NDAs lasting for 3 to 5 years’ however, ‘some information must be kept confidential forever (subject to it becoming public of course).’

To conclude, NDAs are very serious and should not be treated as a joke. Companies use them to disclose private and confidential information that they don’t want being exposed, so talking to anyone, even people from the company and you happen to be in public, should be avoided. Finally even though the game is released, some information might not be out in the public, so it is still suggested that you avoid talking it.

Bibliography

Bushby, D., 2015. 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Non-Disclosure Agreements. [Online]
Available from: https://www.lexoo.co.uk/blog/10-things-you-didnt-know-about-non-disclosure-agreements/
[Accessed 16 March 2016].

Dusty, 2013. Protecting Your Ideas via Non-Disclosure Agreements. [Online]
Available from: https://www.gameacademy.com/protecting-your-ideas-via-non-disclosure-agreements/
[Accessed 16 March 2016].

Lane, R., 2016. A Conspiracy of Silence: How NDAs Are Harming The Games Industry. [Online]
Available from: http://www.kotaku.co.uk/2016/01/25/a-conspiracy-of-silence-how-ndas-are-harming-the-games-industry
[Accessed 15 March 2016].

Teesside University, 2012. Matthew Oakley: BA (Hons) Computer Games Art. [Online image].
Available from: http://www.tees.ac.uk/sections/fulltime/studentviewprofile.cfm?studentviewid=688
[Accessed 08 May 2016].

Carr & Farrell LLP, n/d. What is a non-disclosure agreement?. [Online image].
Available from: http://appmuse.com/appmusing/what-is-a-non-disclosure-agreement/
[Accessed 08 May 2016].